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Suddenly the "backspace," "g" and "h" keys stopped working - HP laptop

Posted on 2014-04-18
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Last Modified: 2014-05-01
Model:  Pavilion g6-2106nr
OS:  Windows 7 Home Premium, 64-bit, Service Pack 1
RAM:  4 GB

Keys on my wife's laptop keyboard that were working are not working now.

Suddenly the "backspace," "g" and "h" keys stopped working, as well as the "8" key on the number pad, and the asterisk over on the numberpad, and the sound "mute" button (F11)

A restart did not change anything.

We're going to try powering-down in  a minute and then powering back on.

Assuming that does not work..what are some options we can pursue.  Can this be a software problem or a strange virus at work?
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Question by:knowlton
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by:jcimarron
jcimarron earned 125 total points
ID: 40009078
knowlton--
This sounds like it started only recently.  Do a System Restore to a time before the problem started.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/700-system-restore.html
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by:tailoreddigital
tailoreddigital earned 125 total points
ID: 40009111
Try blowing it out with some canned air.

Also try using an external keyboard to help narrow this down to software or hardware.
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by:nobus
nobus earned 125 total points
ID: 40010079
you can test if the keys do work when booted from a live cd , like Knoppix :
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=knoppix      

this will show if the hardware  is ik - or not
if not; you'll need another keyboard
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Author Comment

by:knowlton
ID: 40010852
Are there programs that can map other keys to "G" and "H" and "BACKSPACE"  ... like maybe remap some of the function keys so that F2 generates the letter "g", F3 generates the letter "h".
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by:nobus
ID: 40011022
did you test with Knoppix?
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by:Danny Child
ID: 40011110
Start.. Run.. osk and Enter will get you an On Screen Keyboard to get you going a bit, at least.
if all you have is the mouse, you can browse to C:\Windows\System32 and double-click osk.exe there.

A random distribution of letters across the keyboard is unlikely to be a fault with the keys themselves, but the ribbon cable that connects it back to the motherboard could be bad.

To confirm it's hardware, you'll need to either boot to Linux or Knoppix, as Nobus suggests,
or, start changing hardware till you've found the issue!
so, the boot option is easier -

Here's a link to download it
http://mirrors.kernel.org/knoppix-dvd/KNOPPIX_V7.2.0DVD-2013-06-16-EN.iso

Once it's downloaded, you need to make a bootable DVD from the download file.
Most disk burners do this automatically, but if you need one, this is fine:
https://cdburnerxp.se/en/home

Bootable CD guides:
http://pcsupport.about.com/od/tipstricks/ht/bootcddvd.htm
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by:jcimarron
ID: 40011484
knowlton----
Did you try a System Restore as suggested?  http:#a40009078
It would be the quickest/easiest fix if it works.
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by:knowlton
ID: 40011742
I am reluctant to run a system restore quite yet.

I'd like to know if I can re-map function keys to "G" or "H".
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by:jcimarron
ID: 40011794
knowlton------
"I am reluctant to run a system restore quite yet."

If you have run it in the past you know it takes only a few minutes.  The major downside is that you will lose and will have to redo whatever downloads and installations you have made between the date of the System Restore and today.
Step 9 of the link I post above shows how you can learn what changes will be made before you run System Restore by clicking the "Show affected programs and drivers " button.
http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/700-system-restore.html

Re-mapping function keys sounds like something I would do only as a last resort.  It took me enough years to learn the keyboard as it is.
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by:nobus
ID: 40012077
i just ran into a similar question -  and guess what the solution was ?
using another mouse..?  go figure ...
worth a try  for you too -  in any case - update your touchpad driver first !!!
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Accepted Solution

by:
Danny Child earned 125 total points
ID: 40012364
If you do want to remap the keys, then SharpKeys is probably the easiest way:
http://sharpkeys.codeplex.com/

Take care to read the notes there, and this is obviously just a workaround, not a fix.
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Author Closing Comment

by:knowlton
ID: 40035865
Thank you!

Tom
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by:knowlton
ID: 40035869
She ended-up buying a new keyboard.
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by:jcimarron
ID: 40035894
knowlton--Thanks for telling us the outcome.
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